Thursday, May 8, 2008
While green design is heavily related to technological advancements, there are natural modifications that can be made. NAHB has included many of these in their newly released Green Building Guidelines. Having windows face south, for example, makes a big difference in keeping a house warm during the winter. The low winter sun angle is available, but since many windows are facing the wrong side they are unable to reap its benefits. Planning the orientation of homes on lots could be done in a more efficient manner; many neighborhood plans and home designs fail to consider the characteristics of the environment in their region. Instead, “traditional” styles continue to dominate in today’s new home market in spite of their lack of adaptability to solar orientations, window locations, shading, prevailing winds, views, yearly rainfall and landscaping.
With the invention of Freon refrigeration, home air conditioning opened up the housing market in places that people once avoided, like
Let’s put an end to the square box two story houses with windows scattered indiscriminately around the four compass points ignoring the path of the sun and providing no shade for windows in the summer. Longer rectangle-shaped houses with most windows arranged along the long south elevation will do a better job of collecting the sun’s heat in winter. Shading the windows in the summer will keep the heat out better than high performance glass alone. We need new land planning lot patterns that will facilitate the ability of builders to orient their new homes to the sun. With a little planning and creativity, green homes can be designed to be beautiful, efficient and smart.
posted by Custom Blogs @ 3:22 PM
Thursday, May 1, 2008
Small Town “Active Living” Concept
During this moment of reflection and questioning, the idea of retirement is considered. Where to retire is paramount in people’s minds and the choices are unlimited. Historically, as many as 50% of people move to a new home sometime in retirement. The desire to stay near the familiar is powerful, but is eventually outweighed by the promise of adventure, new relationships, the fun of retirement and an easier, relaxed lifestyle.
Active Adult Communities are specifically designed to offer the fun, adventure and the new relationships with like-minded people that young retirees want. Sun City in
Small towns can offer all of this in a more authentic package. The people are friendly and they include children and young adults, as well as others our own age. Most of us at this age enjoy the spirit of young people and the inspiration they give us to enjoy each day as the start of a new life.
posted by Custom Blogs @ 4:07 PM